[inaudible conversations] >> welcome to the 27th annual "chicago tribune" printers row's lit fest. before we guinea today's program please turn off your cell phone and all other electronic devices. if there's time at the end for a q & a session with the authors, we ask you use the microphone located in the center of the room so that the home-viewing audience can hear your questions. if you would like to watch this program again, note our coverage will be re-aired tonight beginning at 11:00 pm. please welcome moderator eric zorn of the "chicago tribune." [applause]
>> thank you. in the 1964 case of escabidoo versus illinois, which comes to depend on the confession end quotes. we are in the long run less reliable and more subjects of abuses of extrinsics evidence secured through skillful investigation. the book that we're going to talk about today, "long way home" by laura caldwell deals with a case of wrongful confession, a case built as they say -- that depended on confession. and this was a great problem for jovan mosley who is all the way to my right here who was the defendant/victim in this case of justice gone awry. i would like to start our conversation by starting of the case and to tell the story and
i'd like to turn to the author just to give us a little tassel summary of what happened and to bring jovan mosley to the conversation as appropriate. >> well, thank you. and thanks for doing this. it's a delight 'cause i've been reading eric's work and he's been doing a lot of work with wrongful confessions, forced confessions, wrongful convictions which is something of a passion of mine as of late. but it's very strong because you would not have thought that. i am a lawyer but i was a medical malpractice attorney. and made partner at a law firm, but i was writing on the side, just as a hobby, just kind of -- i would attend a book class and they would tell you ho to you write a novel and they would tell you how to work on it on the side. well, i thought i gave it a shot. nobody was really interested. bridget jones wasn't out yet,
"sex and the city" wasn't out yet and it had a little bit of that tone and people were like, i don't know. i just kept writing because it made me happy. and i was fortunate enough at a cocktail party one time to meet a woman who would become my editor. she bought a number of books for me. i met another editor and strangely i went frommun -- unable to be published and then we sold seven novels. it was very abrupt that way, entry into the literary system but i wrote chick lit novels and then i wrote mystery novels and i taught at loyola law school and that was kind of it. you know, i really felt like i had everything and i did. but strangely when i was writing one particular mystery novel called "the rome affair," i had
a couple in the belmont police station and the cops are going back and forth and they're saying to the husband, do you know what your wife husband is saying she said she pushed you down to the edge. do you know what he's saying down there and so they're trying to turn them against each other but i was concerned i was channeling law and order or anything. i didn't really know a lot about forced confessions so i called the cathy o'daniel and i didn't know her well at the time but i knew she was a criminal defense lawyer, a very good one. and i said, hey, do forced confession it is ever happen? and she said, oh, honey, they happen all the time and then she said, here's my recent favorite on that, though. i was in 26 and cal, the lockup division, the maximum security. the inmates call it super max.
she was there to see a client. on the way out, the client got taken first back to his deck and the guards -- 'cause she was so in there so frequently and walked away for a second and she was by herself and division 11, maximum security, super max jail, and she said there's like this alarm bell went off and all of a sudden she saw some inmates coming down the hall and other people were leaning down the banister now and she kind of thought, wow, maybe this is where it all ends for me, at the super max. and so she wouldn't have thought her life would end there. and then she saw someone pushing a broom, another inmate. and this was scary for her because brooms can be used as weapons. and in cook county jails, we don't rehabilitate. it's just people waiting for trial. this is a holding cell, so people don't have jobs. we don't rehabilitate them, so there's no reason that child should have a broom but instead of doing anything, he came up to
her, and i will turn this story over to jovan because i want to ask him something -- he came up to her, if you don't mind, if you move over, you'll be fine. they won't see you. you know, the guys. he told the guys to please back away and strangely they all followed his -- like right away followed his instructions. and so he and cathy started talking and i'm going to let jovan tell you how they met a little bit more. but what struck me is -- this is a woman who would take on his case, who would say you've been here for six years. you've been in this -- in that holding cell for six years? and this is a woman who would take his case on and essentially save him. and the only reason he met her was because he made one small -- one small act. i mean, a small act can bring about big changes. so that one -- he could have just kept walking by, what did
he care? he was in a holding cell for six years. but, you know, the reason eric is talking about forced confessions is because the way they got in that holding cell was having jovan in an interrogation room for two days after he'd seen a fight but i'll let jovan tell that part of the story. >> okay. well, the way that things happen when i was in the county jail, when i met katherine o'daniel, i was -- i had in there maybe four and a half -- a little over four and a half years, and i came out to do my regular work. i used to clean up in the holloways and things like that. so i was cleaning up and i seen -- well, i heard first a lot of noise. and when i looked down the hall, i saw this lady in the hallway. she seemed a little nervous, and the guys were on both sides of
her asking her a lot of questions and just basically heckling her. so i walked down there casually acting like i was cleaning up and things like that. and i got to her and i told her, you move to the side just a little bit they wouldn't be able to see you. you won't have to worry about them bothering you. so she moved to the side, and she started asking me about -- asking me about my case. so i told her that i had been there almost five years. and she said, what's going on? she said -- i told her that it was nothing. i don't know. what's going on? and she said you don't know? is there any motions? is a trial set or anything like that? i said, no. i don't know. so she said who's your judge? who's your state's attorney and we talked and she said she knew both of them. and after a while she was like, you know, it was -- you know, she couldn't believe that i was
in there that long. but she wished me the best and i told her i would get an officer to take her down. so i went back down to get an officer and take her down. and when the officer came back up, he said i don't know what you did to her, but she said, you know, get in contact we are. and i was like, okay, so i went to the guy who she came to see. and i asked him about her, and he said that she was charging him $150,000 for one of his cases and like 60,000 for another case. so immediately i was like, okay, well, i can't afford her so -- [laughter] >> so i dismissed that thought. but over time, over maybe three or four months, she had me in contact with my judge, with my public defender and also with my mother. so i still -- i really didn't think that she would take the case on. so she took her price down from -- [laughter] >> from as high as it was and
said, you know, i came up with $8,000, she would take the case. but i was thinking, wow, my family really doesn't have that either. so like another month went past and it went down to $3500. [laughter] >> this was just for her investigator. so i had -- i went to court, and my public defender asked me about her, and i told him, i said, well, i can't afford her so, you know, you don't have to worry about her taking the case. lo and behold, the next court date, i was in the bullpen just sitting and minding my own business and lady walked in and said, jovan mosley, jovan mosley, and i was like, yes, congratulations, your my first pro bono case. and i was like, wow! mike really? i really didn't remember her but i kind of remembered her face a little but that was the first time that she ever did a pro
bono case and it was at that time it had been just over five years i had been in there and she moved the process on. >> let's talk a little bit why you were there. what put you into that -- a little bit of the back-story here. and it involves -- well, i would like to you tell the story, for a little bit of background, there's a story in an english language newspaper in chicago recently with the headlines, why -- why do innocents confess to murder? and it points out that 80 exonerations through dna evidence, nearly 54% of those wrongly convicted had falsely confessed to murders they didn't commit according to the innocence project. in a variety of techniques that the police used to get confessions that, unfortunately, at times results in obtaining false confessions. there's some high profile examples of recently around here. kevin fox out in will county that was accused of killing his little girl, reilly, if you remember that? and he was interrogated and dna
evidence finally cleared him. jerry hobbs up in lake county who was accused of killing his daughter and a friend. and he confessed to that under questioning and they told stories that were strikingly similar to the story that jovan will now tell you and laura will tell you about, how it was that jovan happened to be five years after the fact in cook county jail, pushing a broom at the right time. so tell the story about the murder here that was involved and how they got you involved in that? why you confessed to that. >> i don't know if jovan will brag enough about himself so to introduce what happened, jovan grew up on the south side. and one of his brothers was in jail for arson murder and had been in a gang and had told him never get in a gang. do not get in a gang because he will not get out. do not do it. his other brother passed away
and he made a concerted effort to stay out of that life, had no arrests, no problems with the law. went to a vocational law school and went to ohio state and got lost in the financial aid process and was 19 when he went walking around with some guys who got in a fight. he walked to the beginning of the fight and realized it was getting out of hand and he walked away. six months later he got picked up. of course, the police -- what happened is a man died in that fire. so the police were doing their job and looking for who had done that. he was with those gentleman that night so he got picked up. he was, however, then -- and i'll let you tell him about that part. he was kept in a room with 48 hours, with no sleep, no water, no bathroom, like nothing. and, you know, having no idea of time passing, i'll let jovan tell you about that. >> just like laura said, that was a fight.
it happened. in my neighborhood, fights happen a lot. so you could either stay there and watch, participate or walk away. and i wanted to do the smart thing. i walked away when i seen the fight -- the fight was getting out of control because a lot of times if you're around when a fight happens in my neighborhood, they arrest everyone. so i didn't want to be a part of that, so i left and lo and behold six or seven months later, i was arrested for that crime. i remembered that day. i was -- i had moved back in with my grandmother and i was walking down the street to meet her at the store because she went to go get and groceries. when i was walking down the street, a detective's car pulled on the side and hopped out of the car and asked me my name and just put me in handcuffs and put me in the car. and while i was in the car, i was nervous and i was scared. i was really scared to ask questions, but i asked anyway. and i asked the officer could he
tell me what this was pertaining to and he said we'll let you know when we got there. i was quiet and paying attention to where we were going and i ended up at the police station. while at the police station, the officers put me in this room and left me there. this was for maybe two or three hours. i was just sitting wondering why i was arrested. now, i didn't know there was -- it had anything to do with the fight that happened. so i was just sitting there and concentrating why i was there. and maybe two or three hours, like i said, passed, and an officer walked into the room and said, we investigate violent crimes. is there anything you want to tell us? and i said, no. and he closed the door and walked back out. so i was sitting there like violent crimes? why am i here for a violent crime and i was started thinking and i really didn't know what he
was talking about. and maybe another hour came, passed again and came back in and asked, you know, is there anything you want to tell us? can you tell us what happened in august of 1999? and this was -- this was march of -- this is march of 2000. and i told the guy, i can barely remember what happened two months ago. [laughter] >> you're asking me about something that happened in august? so he thought i was playing with him or something and he walked back -- he actually said, are you playing with me? and became upset and walked out of the room, him and another officer. so i sat there for a couple of other -- a few more hours, and this process was going back and forth. to move it along, they came -- they started doing the good cop/bad cop -- have you ever heard of that? >> have we ever heard of that? [laughter] >> we all watched tv.
>> they actually did that with me. there was one cop who was very aggressive. and he would come in and threaten me and say, i'm going to slap you if you don't tell me the truth. i know that you participated in this and then there was another officer that would say, you know, just be calm, everything will be okay. we're just trying to get this process along. but all during this time, i was telling officers -- they eventually told me after maybe 10 or 12 hours after being there they were investigating a fight that happened in august of '99 and the guy died, and they told me that they were -- that they had some people in custody and that they knew that i participated in the fight. so i told the officers constantly that i didn't participate in the fight. and like i said, one cop would always say you're lying to me. you're lying. the other cop would say, well, it's okay. you know, you just -- we're trying to get the truth. and so if you stay calm, you know, we're going to get everything out of the way and
we're going to get you home. so the bad cop came in and started asking me questions. asking me about some of the defendants that were on the case. and he came up with some strange nicknames that i've never heard before and he thought i was lying when he told me he had never heard those names before. and he came back in with some papers and pointed out my name on -- he didn't show me that my name was on the papers, but he pointed on the paper and said your name is right here, right here, right here. is there anything you want to tell us because they're saying that you participated. and i constantly told him that i didn't participate in this fight. at all. so he -- >> tell them how you -- [inaudible] >> okay. we went through a lineup and everything. they said i was picked out in the lineup. they said that one of my codefendants said that i was there and that i didn't hit the
guy -- the guy died from being beat with a baseball bat. so they said that i didn't hit the guy with a baseball bat but i did hit him two times in the side with my fists and they were like very specific with the two times on the left side with my fists and i told them i didn't touch this guy. when the fight happened, i left. and one cop didn't believe me. the other one did. but after hours and hours -- i mean, i asked for a lie detector test. it wasn't given to me. i asked to make a phone call. it wasn't given to me. and i was basically getting tired. they brung in a sergeant who scared me. he said that, you know, if i didn't tell them what really happened, that i would be charged with a murder, attempted murder, a battery. he named like six or seven charges really fast and i was scared. i was like, you know, no, wait a
minute, don't leave. when he left the officers talked to me, well, if you tell us -- that what happened that night, that we're going to -- you know, we can get this process on. you won't get charged and you'll go home. so after a while of them constantly doing this and me constantly telling me that i'm -- i didn't do anything, one officer talked to him and jovan, we know you didn't hit this guy with the baseball bat. we know you only hit him two sides of the face and we think you did if you just say you hit the guy two times in the side with your fist, we're going to let you go home and we'll get the process on. so i sat there and i thought about it for maybe 30 minutes and he said, that's the only thing you have to say. and so i said, okay, i'll say it. and that's how the confession happened because, you know,
after being in that so long, you know, you really just want to go home and i was just tired, you know, i was constantly telling him that i didn't do anything but they wasn't believing me. so when he said they wanted the guy with the baseball bat and that, you know, hitting the guy in the side with my fist was not murder, and that i'll be able to go home, i took that chance and said, okay, well, i want to go home. >> i don't -- you know, i don't think -- i think -- i don't find it hard to understand why you did what you did. i think, you know, this question you ask, why do innocent confess to murder? a lot of times there's different levels. i mean, i think kevin fox questioning to killing and assaulting his daughter is really different than this situation where essentially he confessed to throwing two punches. >> what happens a lot -- the thing about this story is you can get in the story and think, wow, that's an unusual situation. and i would never sign a paper in that kind of situation.
but over and over again, you hear these stories and they're books of -- that chronicle numerous wrongful confessions and the story is very similar in a lot of these cases which is exactly what jovan talked about. police officers, look, say it was self-defense. you hit them a couple times and it was self-defense and, you know, we'll let you go home. there's an effort at the end of these interrogation processs to minimize this. you can go home and we're done with this. and then -- all the things that he talked about, the deprivation of food and water and phone calls. the cops playing each other off -- playing off one another. and this idea at the end of minimizing the charges, oh, just sign this and it will be over and, you know, we know you didn't mean it. and we'll be able -- i'm sure you'll be able to walk free. this is all a very common thread in these wrongful confession
stories. i would say, though, and one of the things is -- that i think people in this room can agree with is that if you use these same sort of techniques with a guilty person and then were able to independently corroborate their confession, this would be a good investigative tool. there's nothing that says we have to -- everything that everybody says to a suspect has to be the truth in an interrogation process. but that process needs to be transparent. and one of the facts that i don't think jovan mentioned all the notes from the interrogation that are supposed to be preserved mysteriously disappeared. the process of this was -- how many hours was it? 20? >> he was in there for two days. on the actual report -- there was one report that was manufactured a year and a half after he was interrogated and it was something to the effect -- 38 hours or 36 hours. but from the time he was
actually picked up till he actually arrived was days, yeah. >> because i was -- i was arrested where they picked me up on a sunday early in the afternoon and i remember when i got -- when i arrived at the county jail, it was a tuesday at night. >> i wanted to point out something else, which is when i was first made aware of this book and the jovan mosley case and my first thought was who's jovan mosley? how did i miss this story. i'll tell you how i missed this story. the only time before this book came out that jovan mosley's name appeared in any chicago newspaper that i can find was -- and i had to print it out, unfortunately, is an 88-word story in march of headlined "teen held in robbery beating death of man." and it contains one paragraph that suggested he might not have done it. saying mosley's mother dolores
saying wednesday she believes her mom was not involved in the fight. and this case, again, he was in prison for -- he was in jail for more than five years. his case languishing there. he had a public defender who seems to have been overwhelmed maybe at best and maybe suspicious of that jovan was actually guilty at worst. and he did not have the advantage at that time that some other defendants have being hooked in with a northwestern or depaul or someone who's going to, you know, highlight his case 'cause you look at it and when you take a look at the facts of the case, it was outrageous what happened to him. nobody ever called me and i get a lot of calls. nobody ever called my colleague steve millions who was excellent in wrongful confessions. his name was wrong to us. and it was only through this incredible sequence of events that got you this -- katherine
the attorney that really pushed this case forward because my reading of the chicago magazine article about this case a couple of years ago was that your public defender thought you were kind of slick and didn't trust you. >> one of them. >> one of them. one of them didn't. so he wasn't going to call the newspapers to get anything going. he wasn't going to bring any pressure. >> and, you know, cathy and i debated that -- cathy is just not the type to self-aggrandize. she is unlike so many criminal defense lawyers in chicago. she will not call a press conference for herself. but weigh debated seriously before we started the trial, we thought should we, you know, call you guys and say, look, this guy has been in here five years and nine months without a trial. for someone who has never had -- you know, an arrest or anything, no involvement with the criminal justice system but cathy pointed out and i think she was smart to
do so, you know, the state's attorney -- they work really, really hard here in cook county, but she's, you know, if we just throw that story up there, they're going to try harder 'cause we'll get them angry. >> make it a high profile case so we just kind of let it slide. >> you and cathy got -- you called her. she told you about this case. >> right. >> and you ended up as co-counsel basically, right? >> yeah. when she told me about him, i was just sort of in awe and thought, wow, i can't believe that happened. and cathy said and do you know what the biggest problem is? and she said what, i believe him. she's like i love this kid. i totally believe him. this is the worst place to be a criminal defense lawyer who adoors and believes her client. i felt so bad for her and i knew she was really busy. [laughter] >> with her kids so i offered, you know, oh, honey, let me do
some of your writing and i'll pimp out my law students and make them do some writing, too. so we did that and the more we were looking at motions and his case, i was constantly struck by his records just disappeared and p.s., when someone is in an interrogation room for two days there's like records so the other three defendants stacks of records and jovan had an arrest and a confession. and it was just really -- other things had been manufactured a year and a half, three years later in response to the motions on the case but it was really kind of -- it was so striking to me that, well, the way it happened, the first way that jovan and i met at super max and cathy called me one morning and said, look, i'm in such big trouble with this case. i really believe this kid but i have to go to super max today and i got to cross-examine him and i need to cross-examine him
like a state's attorney would. i need to rip him apart, and i absolutely can't do it. so you got to do it for me. and i was like writing now and i hadn't been in the courtroom and i was really don't toy with me, seriously? let's go. so we get down -- if you're a trial lawyer, you just -- i know it's a little gross and competitive but it just stays in your blood. [laughter] >> cathy had also gotten her lawyer husband and off we go to super max and i felt a kinship with jovan immediately but i was more excited about practicing my cross-examination skills and so eddie and i -- we beat you up. >> you did. >> you really have to get them ready. >> they did. the process was brutal. i mean, they were asking me questions and i would tell them the truth and they would twist everything that i said around. >> uh-huh.
[laughter] >> and -- i mean, cathy's husband was the worst of all. [laughter] >> this guy -- he just -- i mean, he broke me down. he actually made me cry. >> that was the first i've seen this kid cry so many times but this is the first time. this guy made me cry and everything he i told him, he twisted it and he had us to the point where i was questioning when i was there or not. [laughter] >> the crazy part is we left that room, and the minute the doors closed behind me and cathy said to me and she said, do you believe him? and i said, yes, you're trying the case with me, yes! and she decided and i sort of followed her out of super max thinking, man, i've defended doctors but i've never defended someone accused of murder. it was a really -- you know, you ask sort of our partnership, it was a really strange timing. and it ended being -- she's -- both of these two are two of my
best friends. >> also from something i want to read from this english language newspaper that i referred to earlier, was a review that says, i've read hundreds of books and periodical features about wrongful arrests and wrong way convictions it's one of the best because kauffman mixes both well because she writes well she's also a novelist and because o'daniel is such a fascinating heroine, it did not become a wrongful conviction but very close. i did want to talk about something in the news now that there is another case going on in which a high profile defendant has taken the stand. in your case, in your case, jovan, you elected not to take the stand and the reason that you didn't was -- had to do --
it's chronicled extremely well in the book but early in this case -- or in the criminal case, a woman was called to the stand who was -- who was a character witness for you, essentially? >> yes. >> and tell the story of what happened to her and how that influenced your decision about testifying. >> well, the person -- anita. >> yeah, the person who was called was my old supervisor -- i worked for geoffrey goldberg & associates for a while and she was my supervisor. so she came as a character witness. and when she -- she's the nicest and sweetest lady in the world. i mean, she really is. and she was put on the stand, and the state's attorney was asking her questions about my character, how i was when i worked at the law firm. and she said that i was pleasant and -- she had one particular word. i can't remember it right now. i can't recall -- she had one
word and the state's attorney -- peaceful. >> peaceful. the state's attorney used that word to beat her up, basically. he asked her peaceful, how is he peaceful? could you tell me how he was peaceful? was he peaceful every day? really cross-examined her like she was me. and -- i mean, she was like, peaceful. he was a nice person and broke her down on the stand. >> so then -- and then jovan starts crying, cathy's is elbowing don't cry because she already said tears can be interpreted, you know, two different ways. and meanwhile i had put her on direct so it's my job, if we're going to object to do it but cathy wasn't letting me. she realized she was the most intense cross-examination of the trial. they had put no evidence against him except his confession. and here this character witness is getting beat up and cathy kept looking at me -- she could tell i wanted to say objection and she said, let it roll.
let it roll. let it roll. she said they're sinking themselves. so she let -- oh, my god, it was so painful. >> the woman was reduced to tears, right? >> yes >> this is a character witness. she wasn't a witness to the crime or anything. >> yeah. >> she was like aunt bea. >> the state's attorney all gave him -- they joked with him, she looked like aunt bea. you don't cross-examine someone like that when they look like aunt bea. like you cross-examined her like she was a street corner hustler, like, no! and so after jovan's verdict, the -- and i don't -- you know, i guess you'll have to read the book to hear about the trial part, which was fascinating, but it was a roller coaster. after the verdict, the jury asked to see us. we went -- jovan didn't get to see them but cathy and i went back there. they were crying, crying, they were so attached to the case and they were saying, you've got to take care of him.
you've got to take care of him. meanwhile, little did we know that the foreperson of the jury would take jovan shopping and buy him things like underwear and like all this stuff. but any estimate have in any event they would like to see the state's attorney and they all started getting on the one young guy who had beaten up this character witness and she's guys are so great, though, they work so hard down in those trenches and they have such a black comedy sense of humor that i ran into ethan is his name. he's a great lawyer, great guy. i ran into him at like the peninsula spa, and he walks up and he says -- and someone like i'm sorry, he said i'm the villain. every story needs a villain. i'm the villain. it's fine, i'm fine. [laughter] >> but those guys are -- they're fantastic lawyers. >> you joke about that. but my question is, when -- if you're a prosecutor, your job is to find the truth. your job is not to win a conviction.
and i don't understand in reading this entire book and then i urge you to do it and see if you come to a different conclusion, how the prosecutor could have looked at the evidence and actually stood up in front of a jury and asked them to convict jovan mosley of this crime. it was just shocking to the conscience. and another thing that ought to shock people as they see this is that is how obscure this case was. and ask yourself, how many cases like this might be now in cook county? we have a system that misfires often enough and it takes someone coming in, you know -- just about an angel walking into your life to pull you out of this. we're going to run close on time here. i'd like to invite people to come up and ask a couple of questions. and i want to ask jovan, what you're doing now? this exoneration happened six years ago, five years ago? >> five. >> so he's been out five years now. and he told me the story already but i'll have him tell you. what are you doing these things
and what do you want to do? >> well, i've been out, i received my associate's in criminal justice from daley. i'm currently at loy-ola university of chicago pursuing my undergraduate with management with a paralegal and i plan to go to law school next year. [applause] >> and so i have this like -- this fantasy like my dream would be i'm teaching -- 'cause that's where i teach loyola law school and i work in the innocence project and you can sign up the summer after your first year and so i have this like thing, i'm at the podium getting ready for class and he comes in and he's a student. but he keeps saying he's not going to take my class. why? why is that? >> i can imagine her being my teacher like jovan, i expect you to be the best. i want you to be -- >> why? >> it would be brutal. >> darn it.
[laughter] >> but i also work for mareville academy in displays and work with troubled youths, those who had a hard life. i worked directly with them, counseled them, teach them life skills. and actually this monday will be my second year anniversary from being married. [applause] >> my wife is actually in the back, andrea mosley. [applause] >> we have a question here. >> in your time in jail, did you meet people that you were absolutely convinced were innocent? >> i actually did. i met a lot of people that i personally felt were -- was innocent, and a lot of people actually had me go over their cases with them to help them because i studied law while i was incarcerated. so i will go over their cases and a lot of the evidence
pointed to other people, and, you know, like from my point of view, half of the people in there were innocent because it was actually some people -- it would be maybe six or seven people on one case. >> you know, there's an interesting study -- ohio university a couple of years ago studied how often does the criminal justice system get it right? and they got a nice healthy estimate. you can read it to see how they did it. but they got this estimate that 95% of cases, like 95% of guilties are the correct verdict but even if that's the case, there are 10,000 people a year in prison who are innocent. so that's like a tiny amount. >> i'm john kelly. i'm the writer for the boston phoenix. i'm sorry, i missed some of the presentation but i wanted to ask jovan, how you kept hope alive
when you were incarcerated, falsely incarcerated? how did you get through the days? >> it wasn't easy, but i am a christian. my faith was in god the whole time. and, you know, i would read my bible and pray constantly. and try to stay away from everyone. [laughter] >> you know, jovan told me once and it was really helpful when he was getting out of jail, i was going through a divorce and oddly that made us good friends because we were both sort of starting our lives over. and i was kind of cranky a lot of the time. and i asked jovan, like, why do you not seem bitter? his cheerfulness would just irritate me? [laughter] >> and he said, and it's really something in my mantra, bitterness is a choice. sometimes i make it once a day, sometimes i have to make that choice constantly. but i think what i see in him and what i see -- what i've seen in a lot of people in prison who
are innocent is that you're angry, then you just kind of hide and then -- at some point, almost everybody decides that this air space is actually -- the air space in their own mind is the only thing they control in their whole life. so if i'm all pissed off, it doesn't hurt the prosecutor who should have known better or the state's attorney or the detective. and so you sort of learn to make choices and so his words to me about choosing not to be bitter has like been very helpful. thank you. [laughter] >> hi, my name is dan. i have a question for you. being someone who has also been involved in that case personally where the prosecutor did a few underhanded things and actually got caught, what happens to the prosecutors when they hide evidence or when they manufacturer a case that really doesn't belong in the courts? is there any way of getting back at them?
>> they have -- it's nearly impossible because of prosecutorial immunity. and, you know, if you think about it we need to have our state's attorneys not -- you know, able to look into crimes to prosecutor without thinking that every guy who get a not guilty is going to sue them so we have to make it hard to sue those guys or everybody would. however, the standard is so high. so high. it's almost impossible to get over. and a recent supreme court opinion, this case was actually against harry conic, sr., when he was a d.a. in, i guess, new orleans. somebody had sued and said prosecutorial misconduct, somebody that was underhim and they got a $16 million verdict and it was overturned because they said, you know, you have -- it has to be like so high. you have to have so much evidence and so it's really, really tough. >> do you know if there's any internal procedures that the state's attorney -- >> i think they're concerned about it. and i know since, you know, that
has happened, everybody goes through training and how to spot a forced confession. and i think -- you know, they are running a great office and there are great people over there. . and i think they are more aware. >> we have time for one question. >> yes, my name is david. and before this presentation started today, i needed something to read to kill the time until it began, so i went down and bought -- [laughter] >> i take it at home by the way. but i read an article that absolutely infuriated me and i guess i want your opinion on it. it was about a man in chicago who had about 50 speeding tickets, vehicle infractions. he killed two people, two british businessmen in orlando florida. drove his porsche or some type of court up on the sidewalk and
killed them. he confessed to it but refused to apologize. but he did confess to it. at the urging of the family of the two men who were killed, he was able to pay the families "x" amount of money. apparently in the millions because he's from a very, very wealthy family. and as a consequence of that, he will serve his sentence, my recollection is, i just read it -- i think it was two years home confinement, home confinement and a $600,000 condominium in florida. so my question is, where would be the justice in that? and there is something to be said, i suppose, for weighing the benefits that would accrue to the family, all this money they would be getting, but it ticked me off. [laughter] >> wow! >> it's a good issue and,
unfortunately, we don't have any time to discuss it because we have -- i will invite you -- invite you all to have the -- buy the tribune and read the story. it's an incredible pleasure to read a book and then meet the main characters and the authors at the same time. you will have i hope the reverse experience of having met the main characters and you can buy this book. there's going to be a signing right after this. just probably down the hallway here and you can say hello to jovan and to laura and to get to meet them. thank you all for coming to this. [applause] >> i think you'll find there's a lot of -- a lot of detail and information in this book that we could not possibly get to today. the story is riveting. these are great characters. >> thank you for attending today's discussion and for supporting the "chicago tribune"'s commitment to literacy. a book-signing will now take place in the arts room and we ask at this time that you exit the room unless you have a
club talking with charles ogletree about his book, "the presumption of guilt." can you tell me what made you decide to write about the incidents of henry lewis gates. >> a lot of people emailed me tent text messages after his arrest saying this happened to my grandmother, my niece, my uncle, my cousin, my brother. and it was an amazing reaction. and it spread news because it was professor gates and not jamal in the community and it became even more an initial because my dear former student and our president, barack obama, came to his defense and that created a national issue that led to the beer summit but since i write a lot of about the issues of race and justice, it was a natural thing to do. i wanted people to say, if professor gates can get arrested in situations like this when he gives two forms of id in his house and the only crime was arguing with the police officers to his house and what happens to those who don't have a lawyer and power? it explores the broader issue of
racial profiling as what happened in our nation's history. >> did you learn anything that surprised you while you were researching the book? >> the first thing was very interesting. everyone thought that the woman who originally called was the nosey neighbor. she was racial profiling. when we got the 9/11 transcript, she is the hero. she says i see people, i'm calling but i don't know if they live there or work there. the dispatcher said are they white, black, hispanic and she says. she said i think one hispanic but i don't know. the police dispatcher said they were black and all these things we thought we knew in july in 2009, investigation research and analysis show it was not the real story. and that's why the book has been so important. the last chapter 100 ways to look at a black man because with all these calls, dispatches and other material that are received, most of the people who got in contact with me about
racial profiling were professional black men. i started doing research on that, thurgood marshall the late johnny cochran and john o'franklin, vernon jordan, spike leigh, our attorney eric holder, federal judges, ministers, every -- doctors. and it just amazed me how many people had encounters with racial profiling and most of them did nothing because do you know what they want? they don't want a million dollars a they didn't want a satisfaction of a lawsuit. they simply wanted an apology. and i say that to say maybe you can use these stories to remind other people there's not hopelessness but people who find themselves victimized by racial profiling can then tell the story and get all the people to respond to it. >> thank you very much for your time. >> booktv has over 100,000 twitter followers. be a part of the excitement. follow booktv on twitter to get
publishing news, scheduling updates, author information and talk directly with authors during our live programming. twitter.com/booktv. >> what are you reading this summer? booktv wants to know. >> hi. i'm susan collins, senator from maine. i've always been an avid reader. i usually have a book going here in washington and one in maine as well. and the book that i most recently read was scott brown's memoir. he's my colleague, the senator from massachusetts. this truly is an extraordinary book. it's extraordinarily written and moves right along and it gives me a lot of insights about scott brown and his very difficult childhood. it's truly amazing that he's accomplished as much as he has given what an impoverished and difficult childhood that he had.
anyone who loves sports will love this book because in some ways it was coaches and basketball that really saved scott brown. a book that i'm reading right now is michael connelly's the fifth witness. this is a series of books that involve a lawyer who largely practices law out of the back of his car, his lincoln. so they're often known as the lincoln lawyer series. it's just great fun. it moves right along. and it's a nice break from all my briefing books to read this right before i go to bed. this summer i'm going to read my first ebook and i realize probably everybody else has been reading ebooks for years but this is my first one and the one that i purchased. it's supposed to be a terrific book and i'm looking forward to
reading it. it also has the advantage that it can travel with me very easily. and finally, i'm looking forward this summer to reading david brook's new book, it's called the social animal. i think david brooks is absolutely brilliant. and i'm looking forward to learning more about his insights. i understand from talking to him that he did a great deal of research on the brain, gathering together many, many studies. and i think it's going to be a very compelling book. >> tell us what you're reading this summer. send us is tweet at booktv. >> you're watching 48 hours of nonfiction authors and books on c-span2's booktv. >> and then, of course, there were other interesting stories that came about with -- in the city concerning the performing arts center. i tried to be a big supporter
for the arts community. i'll never forget in 1977, '76. i got a call from some business people in the city and they said do you know mr. dario. i had never met him. and he owned the ocean state theater at the time which was the old lowe's state and he said they want to tear that place down and i said, that would be terrible. he said do you know him? i said i don't know him. well, could you call him and make an appointment and convince him not to tear it down? i said well, why do you think i can do that? 'cause you're italian, he said. i said, that's real sensitive, [laughter] >> so i did call him. i made an appointment. i went to see him at his house in lincoln. i'll never forget going up in that big car and when i got out of the car, these two german shepherds lunged at me and i said to the cop, why don't you go ring the doorbell. what? are you nuts, mayor? [laughter] >> so he finally came out and he
put the dogs down and they were heeling. i went in the house and he invited the dogs in the house. [laughter] >> and he started talking and i went to dinner and i gave him a soliloq soliloquy, and he said you want to give me a favor give me a demolition permit. oh, you mean business so i convinced him to come to my office on monday. but his lawyer was lenny decork who since passed away and i said we can't put dario in the same room with others because they hated each other. and so he said, okay, so he went over and negotiated the deal. the city ended up putting a lot of money in it but still we didn't know we were going to do that much at that time. and we finally -- we finally agreed and dario was sitting in my office and i was entertaining him and finally they all said yes, and then dario said to me
after we agreed on the price and the deal was going to be done, dario said, what about my other $40,000. he spoke in broken english. well, they promised me $1,000 a day to negotiate. it's been 40 days. so i picked up the phone and i called miller. never heard miller swear in my life since then. on that day. i said forget about it. forget i even called. the deal's office. i'll handle it. so i said to dario, dario, they don't -- oh, that's why i can't trust them. forget the whole deal. i'll give you $20,000. he said how can you do it. i'll make you the city consultant on the arts. i'm going to hire a racetrack owner as the city consultant of the arts. [laughter] >> he said you can do that. that he said make it 25. i said okay, 25. that's one of the reasons we got the performing arts theater down there there but those are some
stories that happened that you probably never read about in the providence journal and you read it in the book. >> you can watch this and other programs online at booktv.org. >> we're at the conservative political action conference talking with author mark joseph about his next upcoming book. please tell us what it's titled. >> wild car the promise and perils of sarah palin. >> and tell us a bit about the book and how you came up with the idea. >> sure, i wrote it during the '08 campaign and continued to write it since then. my publishers didn't think it would get out in time for the campaign so it gave me a chance to update it over the last two years, but, you know, it's really an overview of her life and politics and since then, of course. >> so with all the books that have come out about her since '08, what do you think is going to be new in yours that we haven't heard from before? >> yeah, i think my book has a chapter on her faith that i think is unique among the other
books. specifically, what i think is significant it's the closest that somebody coming from a pentecostal background sort of the wing of christianity has come to this kind of high office and i think that there are ramifications that are interesting and that i explored this time book. >> did she assist in the book or did she participate? >> no, no. it's independent. >> thank you very much. >> noel webster at the age of 25 has this bestseller and he's very brash and he always thinks he knows sometimes and sometimes he really does. in 1785 he decides what's wrong with america and he was spot-on. the problem, he says, is that under the articles of confederation, the federal government didn't have enough power. so he writes this pamphlet called skechers of american policy and when webster has an idea, he does something. and he takes it to mount vernon
and he takes it to george washington. and washington was not a college guy. now, webster was a yale man. madison was a princeton man. john adams was a harvard man. washington wasn't a college guy. he's very impressed by webster. he said that's a very interesting idea. and he's a great delegator and so he says i'll give it to mr. madison as soon as possible. he gives it to madison and webster's pamphlet becomes instrumental in the drafting of the constitution. and then in 1787, webster's at the constitutional convention, again these are the from us gump moments are evolving to move and shaker movements. in 1787 he's at the constitutional convention. as soon as washington arrives, the first thing he does is knock on webster's door. he's washington's policy wonk. he's not a delegate. he's there as a journalist and then the so-called convention man realizes talents and